Zlatan Ibrahimovic has announced his retirement from football with immediate effect. 

The 41-year-old, who had already confirmed that he was leaving Milan for the second time this summer at the end of his contract, broke the news that his career is now at an end in an emotional speech at San Siro after the Rossoneri's final game of the campaign against Hellas Verona, which the hosts won 3-1. 

In an emotional address after scoring 511 times in 866 club games across seven countries, Ibrahimovic said: "It's the moment to say goodbye to football, not just to you. There are too many emotions right now. Forza Milan and goodbye. 

"The first time I came here [in 2010] you gave me happiness, the second time you gave me love.


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"You welcomed me with open arms, you made me feel at home. I will be a Milanista for the rest of my life."

A player who divided opinion due to his brash public persona, Ibrahimovic was nevertheless one of the greatest players of his generation. 

The Malmo-born striker became his country's all-time record goalscorer, netting 62 times in 122 caps.

He bagged on his Premier League, Serie A, Ligue 1, LaLiga and Champions League debuts, as well as scoring in 10 major derbies - including El Clasico and the Manchester derby - and setting the record for the most goals in a Ligue 1 season (38 with Paris Saint-Germain in 2015/16, a record that hasn't yet been matched). 

Not many players have the personality to play for both sides of Milan, but Ibrahimovic met the challenge with aplomb, scoring more than 50 times for each and winning a combined five Serie A titles. 

Ibrahimovic's age seemed to significantly catch up to him this season as he barely featured due to knee, hamstring and calf problems. 

However, he was a pivotal presence last term in Milan's first Scudetto-winning campaign for 11 years and leaves behind a sizeable footprint on the global stage, even if a Ballon d'Or win did elude him despite 11 nominations. 

From Malmo, Ajax and Juventus to Barcelona, Manchester United and LA Galaxy - he certainly won't be forgotten.